Verse > Anthologies > Alfred H. Miles, ed. > The Sacred Poets of the Nineteenth Century
Alfred H. Miles, ed.  The Sacred Poets of the Nineteenth Century.  1907.
III. Christ on the Shore
By William Alexander (1824–1911)
IN the silence of the morning,
  Of the morning grey and clouded,
      Mist enshrouded,
  On the shore of Galilee,
Like a shape upon a column,        5
      Sad and solemn
  Christ is standing by the sea,
In the silence of the morning.
On the waters cold and misty,
  Like a rock, its dark back lifting        10
      Through the drifting
  Vapours, heaves the fisher’s boat.
Still through grey-fog hood and mantle
      That most gentle
  Watcher looketh where they float        15
On the waters cold and misty.
Hearts are waiting, eyes are weeping,
  Comes a voice, a susurration;
  Melteth, melteth like the mist;        20
Yet, like music rich and olden
      Hiding golden
  Words, that sweet voice hideth Christ
From the hearts that wait, and weep Him.
In another morning silence,        25
  When a greyer fog falls dreary
      And we weary
  With the sea’s beat evermore,
Cometh One, and pale and wounded,
      Mist-surrounded,        30
  Looketh from another shore
In another morning silence.
Other waters cold and misty
  On the wet sands grandly singing,
      Bear a swinging        35
  Little bark call’d Life by men;
While the bark is swinging slowly,
      That most Holy
  Watcher looks: light silvers then
On the waters cold and misty.        40
Hearts are waiting, eyes are weeping,
  Falls a voice, O sweet but broken!
      Falls a token
  Light bedimm’d with blinding mist.
Take us where there are no ocean’s        45
      Wild commotions;
  Where we shall not know, O Christ!
Weary hearts, or tear-wet eyelids.

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